Jeff LaRochelle is an saxophonist/clarinetist and composer who has been a fixture of the Toronto creative music scene for nearly 10 years. A graduate of Humber College in 2010, LaRochelle started working with many Toronto and Canadian artists in the jazz/improvised music scene such as Roberto Occhipinti, Andrew Downing, Phil Dwyer, Justin Haynes, the Soren Nissen Quintet, Les Petits Nouveaux, Andrew McAnsh, Rich Brown, and many others. He co-leads the collaborative jazz trio Autobahn, which was nominated for the Montreal Grand Prix du Jazz in 2016 following their released of their album "Of The Tree".
LaRochelle is now forging his own sound with his new album “Lenses Extend”. After quietly releasing his debut album, “Moonstone”, in 2014, a tribute to his hometown in rural Central Ontario, which embraced a fusion of jazz and chamber music, the new music is embracing the present and looking ahead into the future. LaRochelle has emerged with an increasingly bold musical vision, adding electric guitar, electronics, and vibraphone to the mix for a more contemporary and densely woven texture.
The new music examines both aspects of personal change and growth, as well as the increasing complexities of the modern world. “Does the Internet Dream of Itself?” and “Pity This Busy Monster” are driving juggernauts addressing our relationship with technology and social media. “Fold” is a more brooding piece that was written during a time of coalescence following a failed relationship, while “The Universe Next Door” points to a sense of optimism about the future, and maintaining a sense of perception.
“LaRochelle plays...with spontaneity and musicality.”
— The WholeNote (Tiina Kiik)
“Multi- reedman Jeff LaRochelle has a big, brawny sound, and...emotive soloing on tenor...”
— All About Jazz (Dave Wayne)
“LaRochelle’s tenor is warm and
clear, while he gets moody on the bass clarinet”
— Jazz Weekly (George Harris)
“Jeff LaRochelle is a double-barrel weapon, wielding both a tenor saxophone and a bass clarinet. His playing is bold and fearless.”
— Belleville Intelligencer (David Reed)
“The music reflects his diverse influences but remains thematically cohesive primarily due to the exquisite balance of modernity and tradition and the dramatic ambience this creates….LaRochelle has proven himself a well-rounded artist adept both at multiple woodwinds as well as the pen.”
— All About Jazz (Hrayr Attarian) for his album Moonstone (2014)